The only rare planets I’ve found so far have been dead. Even the bubble planet I found had no flora, fauna, or buildings (other than the “iterations”). So it’s interesting to hear that there’s another kind, with life, and bases. And even more interesting to find that some of the do have portals.
But what are the iterations? I’ve seen some people say they’re sentinels - which is clearly wrong (or, at least, not all of them are).
They don’t all seem to be the voice of the same person / thing. I thought at one point that they were just discarded Atlas subroutines, but the more of them I’ve seen, the more I think that’s wrong, too.
Some of the lore suggests that they’re a separate AI, existing within the Atlas, but not actually part of it - that their function is to observe the traveller, and they achieve this by being the exosuit’s AI. As the suit AI, they’re limited in what they can say, but they see everything. And it seems clear that the Atlas really doesn’t like them. That seems to be why they’ve been banished to lonely, abandoned worlds - the Atlas can’t destroy them - but it can cut them off.
On the other hand, all of the above may be rubbish.